M/S GODREJ SARA LEE LTD. VS. THE EXCISE AND TAXATION OFFICERCUM-ASSESSING AUTHORITY & ORS. (Supreme Court of India-Civil Appeal 5393 of 2010)
Whether alternative remedy is bar to entertainment of a writ petition by High Court?

Analysing various decisions on the subject matter, Supreme Court of India reiterated the well accepted principle of law that :-“………………where the controversy is a purely legal one and it does not involve disputed questions of fact but only questions of law, then it should be decided by the high court instead of dismissing the writ petition on the ground of an alternative remedy being available.”

Our Comments
While statutory right of appeal is normally available under given statutes such rights frequently come with attached preconditions in terms of deposit of certain percentage of the amount involved in original decision or in terms of other onerous restrictions and also it is a matter of common knowledge that many a times, statutory appellate authorities mechanically confirm decisions being appealed and the litigant gets effective remedy only when he challenges the decision ultimately in a writ petition after exhausting remedy of statutory appeal and in the mean time he wastes time and money.
While the self-imposed restriction against entertainment of writ petition will remain very much in force, various decisions such as in the case of Godrej Sara Lee Ltd. v Excise and Taxation Officer-Cum Assessing Authority & Ors., will be helpful to litigants raising a pure point of law in various proceedings practically related to any and every statute including under SARFAESI Act, 2002, Income Tax Act, 1961, Central Excise Act, Customs Act, RDDB Act for getting expeditious outcome without any preconditions.

Also can you add the following in the end of the Article : -“Author of this article: Adv. Ravish Bhatt, Solicitor, Senior Courts of England and Wales, ADIT, Chartered Institute of Taxation

Connect with Mr. Bhatt on Linkedin: www.linkedin.com/in/ravish-bhatt

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